Mother and Child


Woman and child at a Horse Festival in Tagong, Kham, Tibet


Artists have been depicting the special bond between mothers and their children for hundreds of years.




Loikaw, Myanmar/Burma






Zagreb, Croatia



Kham, Tibet

Relationships can be difficult to describe, and sometimes an image tells the story better than words. Painters from the Renaissance to the Impressionists to Mary Cassat, Diego Rivero, Van Gogh, and Picasso each depict something special and unique about motherhood. One of the most powerful and unforgettable photos depicting a mother and her children in the history of photography, is Dorothea Lange’s photograph of a destitute mother and her children taken in 1936.

Dorothea Lange said in an interview about the picture, “She said that they had been living on frozen vegetables from the surrounding fields, and birds that the children killed. She had just sold the tires from her car to buy food. There she sat in that lean- to tent with her children huddled around her, and seemed to know that my pictures might help her, and so she helped me.”








“Thou art thy mother’s glass, and she in thee Calls back the lovely April of her prime…”
-William Shakespeare, Sonnet 3


Ghazni, Afghanistan



Mumbai, India


Kamdesh, Afghanistan



Kabul, Afghanistan


A woman waits at the gate of presidential palace to inquire about her missing son who had been a soldier in the Afghan Army

“A mother’s love for her child is like nothing else in the world. It knows no law, no pity, it dares all things and crushes down remorselessly all that stands in its path.”
– Agatha Christie

45 Responses to “Mother and Child”

  1. […] your Mother’s Day pleasure, I have a link that I’ve been saving for months, to Steve McCurry’s beautiful photography blog. Seeing these pictures only makes me feel more fortunate. For those who are new to Capital District […]

  2. Beautiful photos of mothers and their children. Each tells it’s own story and touches my heart. Thank you!

  3. Steve
    You always were a master for me… if you have time, would you mind having a look at my website ( ? I would be honoured by your comment…
    Thanks anyway

  4. Billie Brazil Says:

    I am an aspiring photographer late in my life. I am truly inspired by your work after viewing it for the first time. Your images make me want to be a better human being with more appreciation of life itself. I am moved beyond words by the powerful thoughts your images provoke in my mind and emotions. Beautiful contribution to this world. We should appreciate what is in front of us, if only we took the time to see it. Thank you for sharing your messages, all of which can be read in each image.

  5. […] Woman and child at a Horse Festival in Tagong, Kham, Tibet   Artists have been depicting the special bond between mothers and their children for hundreds of years.         Nepal     Loikaw, Myanmar/Burma        Germany     Zagreb, Croatia         Kham, Tibet     Relationships can be difficult to describe, and sometimes an image tells the story better than words.  Painters from the Renaissance to the Impressionists to Mary Cassat, Diego Rivero, Va … Read More […]

  6. […] i had , hope you will enjoy. They are still worth to be reading. Photography:- -Gone spelunking -Mother and Child -In Focus: Nairobi Elderly -The Grayest Generation -Spectacular Northern lights -No Exit […]

  7. Inspiring images of yours Steve, photographing relationship through your eyes!

    Jos Runarka

  8. wonderful picture! thnx soooo muuuuchhh!:)

  9. My little girl was fascinated with the photographs!

  10. I added your blog to my bookmarks, hope you don’t mind…

  11. fantasticas fotografias me encantan todas pero en especial meumbay y montenegro



  13. Célia Campos Says:

    Wonderful, wonderful and very well chosen a theme!
    Mothers of the world

  14. Exelent photos. Here in Peru is very often see how mothers works with their children on her back. When I saw these pictures it reminds me how small is the world, in the way that indifferently where we are, poornes and instincts are the same for all. As a chinesse say…the flutter of a butterflay

  15. Another wonderful and powerful series of images – with stories..yet to be told!!!

  16. Your artwork never gets old.

  17. Steve, I made a link to this post on my blog, and I “took” one of your photographs (Myanmar mom) to illustrate it, I hope you don’t mind ? If it is a problem, I can delete it !

  18. amazing …

  19. Wonderful images

  20. Brandon Gaide Says:

    Wonderful photos as usual. I love the universality of the mother/child bond. I wonder, though, if fathers have been present enough to do a father/child set as well? It would offer a fascinating comparison….

  21. I believe you’re the greatest photographer in expressing emotions and contexts of the backgrounds.

  22. Thank you for this collection, it reminds us of what is important, and to be grateful for what we have.

  23. giuseppe benanti Says:

    Taluni sono davvero una sensazione dell’anima

  24. Awesome as always, Steve.

  25. Wonderful images as always!

  26. Pat Davies Digre Says:

    Your pictures stream the souls of these mothers and children through their eyes and their arms…connecting to each other in a physical way, representative of their interdependence…as women we have a great desire to mother a child, and the innocence and trust of a child is one of life’s greatest pleasures and terrors!
    I just purchased 100 Years of the National Geographic Society for a report I am doing for a map class, and the book fell open to your world famous picture of the Afghan girl…as an artist and a person of faith, I find myself mesmerized and drawn to it time and again. Thank you for whatever sacrifices you had to make to get the picture…and thank God you made that timely phone call!!

  27. Thank you Steve for sharing such wonderful pictures on motherhood !

    I really enjoy the way you post by themes. Not only the photos are beautiful to look at, but you also make us take a step back and look at our lives and our planet in a different way…

  28. K. Agung Patriadi Says:

    Beautiful Love… Love your Photos Steve!

  29. There is much debate about what really happened in that scene with Dorothea Lange. Florence Owens Thompson was apparently promised that she would get a copy of the photos, and that they would not be published. Later, her children came out and talked about how humiliated they had been as a family by the portrayal of their destitution. It raises fascinating issues of representation, and how people who are shown in their suffering can also shed light on great need. I can’t imagine the Great Depression without this photograph, and Lange’s project with the FSA was intending to get more funding to help the migrant workers.

  30. Hi Steve, your colors are wonderfuls as always (I still remember your wonderful exposition in Milan Italy). But there’s another unique key in your shots that is the great ability of catching real portraits (with sight touch I mean) that’s fits perfectly in a reportage story. Many compliments.

  31. Excellent photos of the emotion of mother and child.

  32. Hakuei H. Says:

    Thank you for the amazing photos!

    I’m very interested in the photo Kamdesh, Afghanistan. The mother seems very young, yet already possessed the character of motherhood.

  33. Thank you for reading my blog.

    I did not take that picture. It was taken by a woman photographer named Dorothea Lange, who was one of the best photographers who ever lived.

  34. Hi Steve,

    Amazing photographs as always…

    Thanks for sharing,


  35. Just wonderful!

  36. Nicole Giguere Says:

    Your photographies touch my soul… Thank you for sharing them. I am deeply grateful. Merci beaucoup.

  37. The bond is strong and beautiful everywhere. Amazing and emotive images…

  38. Such a beautiful post, thank you for sharing. As I was nagging at my daughter to get ready for school, this made me stop, laugh and be reminded of the special bond between us. Your photography is an inspiration to us all, thank you.

  39. What an inspiration to millions of photographers around the World. Love your work so much Steve! The mum almost looks like a china doll – sweet picture!

  40. Moving Imagery! Says:

    The pictures are amazing! The varied ages and scenarios truly depict how widely varied the expression of motherhood is, even though it is based on the universal truth of unconditional love.

  41. so much of varied emotions!

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